National Infant Immunization Week recognized by state House

HARRISBURG, April 18 – The state House of Representatives today unanimously adopted a resolution recognizing April 22-29 as National Infant Immunization Week in the commonwealth, according to prime sponsor Rep. Peter Schweyer.

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommended immunization schedule for infants and children is designed to give protection early in life before likely exposure to several potentially life-threatening diseases, such as measles, polio and whooping cough. Currently, the United States has the safest and most effective vaccine supply in its history,” said Schweyer, D-Lehigh.

Since 1994, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state and local health departments, national immunization partners, health care professionals and public officials have observed National Infant Immunization Week to highlight the importance of vaccinations and call attention to achievements in immunizations

According to the CDC, routine childhood immunizations in one birth cohort prevents approximately 20 million cases of infectious disease and approximately 42,000 deaths, saving $13.5 billion in direct costs. In 2014, the CDC reported that, among children born between 1994 and 2013, vaccinations are expected to prevent an estimated 322 million illnesses, 21 million hospitalizations and 732,000 deaths over the course of their lifetime.

Despite achievements in immunization, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that approximately 300 children die annually from vaccine-preventable diseases.